The Theater Department at Skidmore College stands in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter Movement and with the fight for justice and equity in the United States, the hemisphere, and the world.
We grieve George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Manuel Ellis, and many, many others. We are enraged by their murders at the hands of police officers.
We are incensed by the racialized inequities of COVID-19 and its disproportionate toll in Black communities, poor communities, and communities of color. We maintain that structural and systemic racism interconnects the fight for Black life with the fight for lives of color, for lives of the global majority, for the lives of poor, trans, indigenous, immigrant, queer, female, and disabled communities in the U.S. and the world.
We pledge our resources to better educating ourselves; rooting out the ways anti-blackness and white supremacy shape our field, department, and practice in structural, organizational, and quotidian ways; interrogating and dismantling our privileges; owning our mistakes; addressing our blindness and failures; and amplifying Black voices and voices of color both on and off stage.
We pledge to articulate actionable tasks across teaching, staffing, and production. This statement cannot and will not substitute for action.
We recognize that the Theater Department is a white majority faculty. We recognize that Black artists and scholars and neighbors have been doing and living this work for generations and are often called upon to educate their white colleagues. It is white responsibility to educate themselves and each other.
We share the below list (also available HERE) to amplify Black voices, and to offer resources, funds, and organizations that we can assist or that can assist us in continuing anti-racism work. This list will continue to be populated.
Black Theatre Association
Black Theatre Network
Black Lives Matter
Bail Out Fund links
Black Mama’s Bail Out – National Bail Out
Black Visions Collective
Color of Change
Communities United Against Police Brutality
NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund
Rachael Cargle – The Great Unlearn
What to Send Up On Your Own
WNYC – Code Switch
TCG Virtual Conference – Opening Session
EDUCATE YOURSELF AND OTHERS
- Read, Learn, and Listen to Black Lives Matter Organizers (Movement for Black Lives, M4BL). For years, they have had clear plans, goals and demands for the survival of Black people. Talk about what is happening with family and friends, which are sometimes the hardest conversations to have.
- Support the Movement for Black Lives (M4LB)
- Alicia Garza: A Herstory of the Black Lives Matter movement
- The Reader Guide to understanding Police Abolition
- What White People Can do for Racial Justice
- A.R.T.’s Diana Oh’s White People Read: Reading List
- Anti-racism resources
- Black Lives Matter Resources Toolkit: https://blacklivesmatter.com/resources/
- The End of Policing by Alex S. Vitale (the Ebook version is FREE)
- Black* Transwoman to Black Cis/Transman: An Open Letter/Poem for Trayvon and the Rest of Us
- How To Be An Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
CELEBRATE BLACK LIFE
- Aleshea Harris’ What to Send Up When It Goes DownOnline, specifically Love Letters to Black People: https://www.bagofbeans.net/love-letters-to-black-people
- Support the Front Porch Arts Collective
- Howlround Black Joy Series: https://howlround.com/black-joy
- Video of “black girl love adaptation project” https://howlround.com/happenings/performance-black-girl-love-adaptation-project
- Listen and support Daughters of Lorrainea Podcast on Black Theatre
- Let’s celebrate black trans women’s lives not deaths
Thank you to The Bushwick Starr, American Theatre and Drama Society, and Tufts Department of Theatre and Performance Studies for sharing resources and language.